This headline doesn’t surprise me at all. I’ve long been a proponent of the idea that online travelers will buy more packages online in large numbers. This increase is despite the fact that technology has not resulted in a significantly improved buying experience for these types of trips. They are by and large still static products rather than truly dynamic, customer created trips. Just wait until technology improves and these increases will be even more significant than today.
As profit margins are much higher for these types of products than the sale of indivdual components, the major online players are hard at work trying to improve their customer tools to make it happen.
Also, how will traditional tour operators and travel agents cope with these developments? It’s going to be interesting to see what develops. In Europe the old offline players sure have awakened and the pressure on the new online players is increasing as these companies exploit their brand awareness and long standing supplier relationships. Will the U.S. players be able to do the same – stay tuned?
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